Input Stories

Input Stories

Much of the “Great Resignation” Consists of Part-Timers

With 11 million job openings, U.S. businesses are wondering why and where all the workers have gone. They may now have more of an answer, according to Yahoo! Finance.

What’s happening: “New research from economists at the Chicago Federal Reserve and the University of Texas offers a surprising insight: Much of the labor shortage comes from part-time workers and those accustomed to working on and off, who have checked out of the labor force more than any other group.”

  • This group tends to reflect people who wouldn’t mind the extra income of a job but don’t need it to survive, study author and Chicago Fed Senior Economist Jason Faberman told the news outlet.
  • These include students, retirees, the disabled and spouses whose job would represent a second income.

COVID-19 changed part-timers’ minds: The study compared (both before and during COVID-19) the number of hours various groups said they wanted to work each week. There was no change among full-time workers and little change among the unemployed.

  • “There were sizable changes, however, among groups that typically get little attention from economists or policymakers. The biggest change came among part-time workers, who on average said they wanted to work 3.2 hours less per week in the post-COVID timeframe.”

Bring them back: Offering higher pay might well draw these part-time workers back into the labor force.

  • “The study shows that desired pay rose more for those out of the labor force than it did for those working. That means people who aren’t working value their time more, consistent with the idea that COVID has driven many Americans to improve their work-life balance or place a higher value on quality of life versus material or financial well-being.”
  • The decline in COVID-19 cases is also likely to see part-time employees coming back in the next few months.

Helping your employees achieve financial security for retirement could go a long way toward re-welcoming people who have left the workforce. Explore the Manufacturers Retirement and Savings Plan, a multiple-employer plan that provides managed account, financial education and retirement security for your employees while reducing administrative burdens and costs and shifting fiduciary responsibility from you as the employer.

View More